Robert Lewandowski and two-goal Thomas Muller were once again on target as Bayern Munich won 4-0 at bottom side Schalke to increase their advantage at the top of the Bundesliga to seven points.
Muller and Lewandowski struck either side of the break on Sunday before late goals from Muller and David Alaba added the gloss as the champions moved onto 42 points from 18 games, having scored 53 in the process.
With second-placed RB Leipzig losing 3-2 at lowly Mainz on Saturday and third-placed Bayer Leverkusen also going down 1-0 to Wolfsburg, Bayern’s win strengthens their position as they seek a ninth straight title.
“In front of goal, it is working out well for me at the moment,” Muller told Sky after his eighth and ninth goals of the league season.
“Schalke had a great chance at the start but when we upped the tempo and stayed concentrated we always threatened. But it is not that we are over-running opponents, even though it was 4-0.”
Schalke had their moments at 0-0 but now sit on seven points, 10 from absolute safety after just one win this term.
Last season’s treble winners broke the deadlock when Joshua Kimmich was afforded too much space and his perfect cross was nodded in by Muller on 33 minutes.
Schalke allowed a long ball over the top – again from Kimmich – to reach Lewandowski, who shrugged off Ozan Kabak and nutmegged goalkeeper Ralf Faehrmann for 2-0 after 54 minutes.
It was the eighth away game in a row where the world footballer of the year has scored and the 11th straight match against Schalke in which he’s netted – both Bundesliga records.
His 23rd Bundesliga goal this term kept him on course to beat Gerd Muller’s record of 40 in a season.
Bayern’s current Muller headed in yet another Kimmich cross from a free-kick on 88 minutes.
A mistake from Faehrmann, who was otherwise excellent, then allowed an Alaba shot from range to sneak through in injury-time.
The clean sheet meant Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer set a new Bundesliga record of 197 clean sheets.